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32

"That's fine," one of the men rejoined, but, Mr. Munn
observed, without much enthusiasm.

"Come here, Perse," Mr. Christian ordered.   "I want to.
introduce you to some of these fellows.   You know Mr.
Peacham and Mr. Sills, but here's Mr, Burden from over near
Princeton."

Mr. Munn did know Mr. Peacham and Mr. Sills, and had
known them all of his life, both farmers from the same county,
Mr. Peacham, tall, spare, grey, and preacherish, with a hooked,
paper-thin nose, and Mr. Sills, an aimless-looking, nondescript,
small man, who had, in twenty years, built up a fine place
from eroded fields bought for taxes, and who had a sharp,
mean tongue and a great piety. Mr. Munn greeted them, and
shook hands. He shook hands with Mr. Burden, a dark man
of middle age, well set up, with a quiet way of speaking. He
had never heard of Mr, Burden.

He knew some of the other men well. There was Mr.
Morse, who ran a newspaper in Millsborough; Captain Todd,
a kindly, bearded man, a veteran of the Civil War, and Mr.
Dicey Short, both tobacco farmers and good ones, men whom
he had seen on the streets of Bardsville from the time of his
earliest recollections. He shook hands with them, detecting in
tfeem, he felt, some nervousness of constraint, and shook
hands with Senator Tolliver. Senator Tolliver was affable,
smiling from his long, aquiline face and saying that he knew
Mr, Munn would have something valuable to say.

KFm afraid not," Mr. Munn answered, "and I'm afraid
fm intruding."

"Not at all, not at all," Senator Tolliver insisted, "and I
personally am very glad to see you agairj."

Mr. Mtian thanked him, shook hands with two more men,
wte were strangers to him and whose names he missed, and
m& a chair at the lower end of the table from Mr. Morse, who
** qpfttrady acting as a kind of chairman. It was a bad
ttt, fcctag the glare of the windows, but it was the only seat
jfc ft* Ms. Christian, with a grunt of animal satisfaction, had
Ms Mk into the one beside fa Senator, and now sat